ARE YOU PLANNING A SUMMER HOLIDAY?
With the outbreaks of Measles in Samoa, Tonga, Philippines, Fiji and elsewhere, the NZ Ministry of Health advises that everyone aged 50 and under travelling to areas with known Measles outbreaks ensure they are up to date with vaccination against this very infectious disease.
They also recommend infants aged six to 11 months travelling to an outbreak area have one dose of MMR (Any child vaccinated before 12 months of age will still need two further doses of MMR)
Ideally everyone needs to be vaccinated at least two weeks before travel.
People who aren’t immune and have early symptoms of measles (fever, cough, runny nose, sore eyes and/or a rash) should not travel.
These outbreaks highlight the need for everyone to be up to date with the NZ vaccination schedule whether travelling or not. When there is an outbreak there is a sudden demand for vaccine from all those at risk and supplies often cannot keep pace for a while. The vaccines then become restricted to priority groups.
It is estimated over 140,000 people died from Measles worldwide in 2018, and for 2019 Measles cases reported are 3 times higher
Check you are vaccinated today – to make sure you have a safe and healthy holiday!